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Data Sourcing – Role of Primary Research

Data Sourcing – Role of Primary Research

DECEMBER 08, 2023

  • Primary research is conducted to provide answers to specific questions by collecting authentic data or to test a hypothesis. It is a powerful tool that can be used for making informed business decisions. The purpose of primary research may be to collect information about technology competitiveness, verify commercial viability, and scalability; or to gain an insight into customer needs, and preferences; or to gather information about competitors’ products, services, and pricing strategies.
  • Primary research provides firsthand information that businesses can use to develop new products or services, improve existing products/services, and define targeted marketing techniques. This will enable them to gain a competitive advantage. Additionally, such data can be used to test the viability of new product concepts and identify potential problems before launching them. A primary research study can also help establish market entry strategies or brand positioning.
  • There are a variety of methods that can be used for primary research which also depends on the objective of the study. Some of the most common methods include online surveys, telephonic or in-person interviews, or on-site research. For example online surveys help collect data from a large number of participants, while interviewing a targeted set of audiences helps gather in-depth information related to a new product/service/technology. On-site research helps involves observing people in their natural environment. To implement a primary research study, it is important to plan carefully to ensure that accurate and consistent data is gathered from reliable sources.
  • Primary research can indeed be time-consuming as identification and recruitment of participants is a key part of the process. Identifying participants with the relevant background and expertise and those who are willing to participate significantly impacts the quality of the survey
    or study.

CASE STUDY    case-studies-search

A Fortune 100 company from the upstream oil & gas industry contacted SciTech Patent Art to identify alternative monitoring methods for the online detection of chemicals contained in crude oil. The client was looking for analytical methods that were less expensive and easy to perform. The client was also interested in obtaining authentic information from companies that were offering technical and analytical services in a specified geography.

Generally, such requests are dealt with by employing secondary research methods involving searches based on web and published technical literature. However, such searches result in information that is very general and may not necessarily cover current updated information. Using such search methods, it is difficult to identify providers of specific analytical services that were of interest to the client.

At SciTech Patent Art, our analysts adopted an integrated approach by using both secondary research and primary research seamlessly. Using secondary research methodology, our analysts collected information from various company websites, published technical literature, trade journals, patents, etc. As a part of primary research, our analysts conducted deep-web searches and also established personal contacts through whom consultants having a deep knowledge of the industry were identified. Following this, our researchers organized phone interviews with consultants, subject matter experts, and company representatives.

Prior to initiating consultation with the concerned subject matter experts/company representatives, our analysts gained a thorough understanding of the subject matter and the required details, through search and analysis of the information obtained from secondary research. Based on the secondary research data, our analysts prepared a detailed questionnaire for the subject matter experts/company representatives, seeking critical information pertaining to the online detection of chemicals in upstream crude oil and also related supplier information. Utmost care was taken while generating questionnaires, as this step could determine the overall quality of the information that was being sourced. Hence, our analysts conducted numerous iterations among the team members involved in the project execution. Once the questionnaires were generated, our team started contacting the experts.

During the process, our team could successfully contacted a lead engineer at one of the world leaders in the oil & gas (upstream) industry, and had a detailed discussion about online detection of chemicals in crude oil. During the discussion, the lead engineer mentioned that they had tried several online testing methods, including the ones identified by SciTech Patent Art through secondary research; however, none of them produced satisfactory results. Hence, client’s team was in the process of trying a novel spectroscopic method that could provide promising results for the online detection of chemicals in crude oil.  Simultaneously, SciTech Patent Art analysts also identified a couple of patents on this topic, which were included in the report. SciTech Patent Art analysts approached several leading companies offering technical services in oil & gas (upstream) area, and enquired if they were engaged in online detection of chemicals in crude oil in a particular geography of interest. The team at SciTech Patent Art successfully contacted the head of sales of a leading company in the said space, and the representative expressed his willingness to offer such services in that geography. Following this, a detailed report was submitted to the client. Throughout project execution, critical client information was not revealed and strict confidentiality was maintained.

Data Sourcing – Role of Primary Research


Learn more about SciTech Patent Art’s result-driven approach to primary research

  • SciTech Patent Art is a technology research firm specializing in patent and scientific literature search and analysis. The analyses conducted by SciTech Patent Art assists its clients in IP strategy development and help set their product development / innovation agenda. The patent and scientific literature research helps understand the technology landscape and the current state of the art. Several insights from the analyses can be captured such as – leading IP players and their geographies of interest; emerging players; industry-academia collaborations; technology development trends; innovative solutions to various technical problems, and other emerging trends.
  • While secondary research is a valuable tool to gather technical insights, the information from it could be combined with Primary research data for an in-depth technology due diligence and development of an effective Intellectual Property / Technology roadmap. Primary research involves designing a detailed questionnaire, followed by conducting interviews with key personnel having industry / technology expertise or potential customers. Information from primary research can be used in determining strength of a technology and identifying potential licensing opportunities.
Data-Sourcing-the role of primary research
Data-Sourcing-the role of primary research

Primary research helps in collecting accurate technical information related to a particular technology. However, best efforts have to be made in identifying the subject matter experts and set up one-on-one interviews to extract reliable information from them. By conducting effective primary research, one can gather authentic information that could help in making informed business decisions.

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